Wednesday, September 05, 2007

Why I won't be going to another festival

There are lots of bad things about festivals, but really I think I can put up with most of them:

Mud - Buy a pair of wellingtons, then it really isn't much of a problem. And it gives your thighs a good workout walking through it for three days.

Weather - It might rain, but again this isn't a problem if you are properly attired, and I've finally cracked the way to dress at a festival. Flimsy dress (it will dry quickly), tights and wellingtons, add cardigan & waterproof jacket as required. Looks good but practical. I was told by a random woman that I looked perfect! This was on the second day - she may not have said that same by the end of the third day, but still it was a nice thing to have said.

Toilets - They are going to be horrid but its only a couple of minutes out of your life. It also stops you drinking too much as you don't want to have to go more than is strictly necessary.

Sleeping in a Tent - the way forward is definitely Tangerine Fields - a perfectly pitched tent waiting for you, with no hassle. Ours didn't leak despite the rain and I was warm enough.

Queuing - you queue to get in, you queue for beer, you queue for food and worst of all you queue for the loo. Its boring, but I'm English, its practically a national sport.

Lack of Cleanliness - everyone is the same situation, so it really isn't that big a deal. Its amazing what you can do with an assortment of wipes and dry shampoo. It is probably better if the weather isn't too good though as lots of sweaty bodies is actually worse than mud.

So what is it that has made me decide I don't want to go to another festival? Let me explain.

Whilst undoubtedly there is more to most festivals than the headline acts (especially at Glastonbury), to me it is still about music, one way or another. The camping and all that other stuff is just a means to an end, a way to get to see a lot of good bands and DJs at once. But it would seem that to many other festival goers, this isn't the means to an end, but the end itself. There were people in our field who weren't bothering to go into the festival site much, they were content to sit around outside their tents, smoking and talking. And I can't see the point in paying £130 to do that, but it seems I'm in the minority.

The reason I'm in the minority of course is that I don't smoke cannabis/dope/weed (I don't even know what people call it these days). I have absolutely nothing against this for a health/legality/moral standpoint, but really it is incredibly dull. Stoned people are incredibly dull. And I don't need a drug to make me dull - I'm boring enough naturally.

So I'm trying to get some sleep and I'm actually pretty good at sleeping when there is noise. If I'm tired enough I'll crash out. But having to listen to the inane, repetitive conversations of stoned people was too much for me.

There was one group of twenty-somethings who were all enthralled to the ramblings of an older bloke (probably late 40s, but it was hard to tell) - we'll call him the Tin Pot Philosopher (TPP). I've honestly never heard some much nonsense come from one human being. He sang sang the entire theme tune from the kids' programme 'Poddington Peas' much to everyone else's delight, as if they were witnessing the second coming of John Lennon. TPP then incesantly made comparisons between a dog's penis and a lipstick (I swear he must have said this 50 times between the hours of 4am and 6am). Then apropos of nothing (at around 7.30), he just shouted 'Get Cape, Wear Cape, Fly' - I'm well aware that this is the name of a band, but why he chose to shout it then wasn't clear.

But the final straw was when one of his followers asked him what the meaning of life was. His response:

'I'd rather be an Emporer Penguin than give you a simple answer to that question'

So that is why I'm not going to festivals anymore.


Girl With The Golden Touch said...

Oh he sounds just fabulous. I have an image of him in my head singing PPeas, and its not a very nice image.

SandDancer said...

I wish I had actually seen him - in my mind I'd imagined him to look like Grounds Keeper Willie from the Simpson which is a terrible stereotype!

V*Kstro said...

Ah, Music Festival 101. Will keep this in mind, thanks.

You make valid points on doped-up people. I don’t have anything against it either, but some of the reasons people take that stuff is NOT to feel boring and they can’t take their “uninterested”(so they think)selves and try to fit in (peer pressure?). But really, how bored can someone be if you are into this stuff (music festival full of mud and not being uneasy about it) and accompanied by friends?

It was great stuff for us bloggers to read! I have a feeling that this will NOT be your last festival, after all you have the gear and experience!

Anonymous said...

lol...the campsite (and the irritating "aren't we just so great when we've had some dope and 45 cans of lager" people who hung around there and never seemed to leave it all weekend!) was the one thing I absolutely hated about Reading, which I guess is why we now always stay in a hotel...

M said...

No festivals for me....You had me at 'mud'. I'll pass. No thanks.

SandDancer said...

I've nearly always gone to some festival for the day most summers so really I think what I mean is "why I'll never camp at a festival again". We originally intended to just stay in a hotel but couldn't find any vacancies, so we stayed in one the night before in the festival town, and then as we checked out we were told they'd had lots of cancellations. We were tempted to just stay there but braved the camping. So I suppose it never got that bad as we knew we could have gone back to a hotel if we really needed to.

Chocolate & cherries said...

I've jst realised I've got to that point in my life where I would have stayed in the hotel! I love music still, but my toerance for stupid people is decreasing daily